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Egypt, UK to soon sign FTA: trade minister Nevine Gamea

Jun '20
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
Egypt will soon sign a free trade agreement with the United Kingdom following the latter’s exit from the European Union, according to minister of trade and industry Nevine Gamea, who recently announced the development during a virtual conference on the government’s role in supporting the private sector organised by the British Egyptian Business Association.

As the United Kingdom considers Egypt to be the main gateway to Africa, her ministry was looking at obtaining additional advantages, especially concerning the export of crops, Gamea said.

The volume of trade exchanged between the two countries reached $2.5 billion during the first 10 months of 2019, compared to $2.4 billion during the same period in 2018.

During the conference, Gamea spoke about intensifying local industrialisation, which is a long-standing issue that has been discussed for years, but whose implementation is not easy, according to Egyptian media reports.

Gamea noted her ministry and the finance ministry have held several meetings with industrialists from sectors like engineering, textiles and readymade clothing to understand the needs of domestic manufacturers.

Customs distortions were the biggest obstacle facing the ministry’s plans to deep local industrialisation, she said.

The government will review the new export subsidy programme, launched last November, in which overdue arrears are being paid. The programme has met with opposition from several companies, which necessitated the review, she added.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

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June 2021

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